League of Ireland: Derry beaten by bottom side Sligo on Premier Division return

Ronan Coughlan sends Peter Cherrie the wrong way from a penalty to give Sligo a 2-0 lead at the Brandywell

Derry City disappointed on the Premier Division resumption after the Covid-19 lockdown by going down to a 2-0 defeat by bottom side Sligo Rovers.

The Brandywell game was the first in the League of Ireland for 146 days but City failed to live up to the occasion.

Ryan McFadden headed in from a corner to put Sligo ahead on 19 minutes and Ronan Coughlan’s penalty doubled the lead five minutes into the second half.

The hosts rarely threatened although Gerardo Bruna wasted a good chance.

Derry signed five players before Friday’s restart but only Joe Thomson made his debut with the other four going through their Covid-19 quarantining period.

The game’s low-key start matched the atmosphere with no fans in the Brandywell and a first taste of competitive action for the teams in over four months.

Off the mark

Sligo failed to pick up a single point in their opening four games but McFadden set them on their way to a first victory as the unmarked defender powered his header into the net from Regan Donelon’s corner.

Rovers posed the greater threat and Eoin Toal blocked a Coughlan strike before Ally Gilchrist volleyed over with Derry’s first effort on goal.

Coughlan had a strong penalty appeal turned down just before the break but the striker was awarded a spot-kick on the restart after a push by Toal.

Sligo’s Jesse Devers can only watch on as Derry midfielder Conor Clifford rises high to win the ball

His cool finish made it 2-0 with the Candystripes only picking up and pace and putting the visitors under pressure in the final 20 minutes.

A mistake by keeper Edward McGinty gifted Bruna the chance to pull one back but he got too much on his lob and the ball flew over.

Bruna also sent a free-kick well over before Walter Figueira fired just wide in the final moments as Sligo held on to move just a point behind Derry after five games.

Declan Devine will be hoping for a big improvement when Derry travel to Dublin to take on St Pat’s Athletic on Monday.

BBC News